August 15, 1977



"Wow Signal" Videos


The Wow! signal was a strong narrowband radio signal detected on August 15, 1977, by the Ohio State University's Big Ear radio telescope in the United States, then used to support the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. The signal appeared to come from the direction of the constellation Sagittarius and bore the expected hallmarks of extraterrestrial origin.

Astronomer Jerry R. Ehman discovered the anomaly a few days later while reviewing the recorded data. He was so impressed by the result that he circled on the computer printout the reading of the signal's intensity, "6EQUJ5", and wrote the comment "Wow!" beside it, leading to the event's widely used name.

The entire signal sequence lasted for the full 72-second window during which Big Ear was able to observe it, but has not been detected since, despite several subsequent attempts by Ehman and others. Many hypotheses have been advanced on the origin of the emission, including natural and human-made sources, but none of them adequately explain the signal.

Although the Wow! signal had no detectable modulation - a technique used to transmit information over radio waves - it remains, as of 2021, the strongest candidate for an alien radio transmission ever detected. Read more....




Mysterious Wow! Signal From Space Deciphered, Says Astronomer   Epoch Times - January 14, 2016
For almost 40 years, astronomers have wondered whether an anomalous 72-second radio signal from space may have been an attempt by extraterrestrials to contact us. Was the sound from comet? In 2017 and 2018 when the same comets again enter the same region of space, an analysis of their hydrogen signals could confirm a new theory.




Was the Wow Signal our first detection of extraterrestrials? It might have been, but no scientist would make such a claim. Scientific experiment is inherently skeptical. This isn't just a sour attitude; it's the only way to avoid routinely fooling yourself. Until and unless the cosmic beep measured in Ohio is found, the Wow Signal will remain a What Signal.

Seth Shostak (SETI)

The Wow Signal came from the direction of Sagittarius.

Sagittarius and the Galactic Center





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